Liberty and Justice for All

As a first-generation American Latina, Independence Day has always been special to me. Both of my parents were born in Mexico, before meeting as migrants in California. After my brother was born, they decided to move to Washington because they heard there were more jobs here. Thanks to that decision, I had the honor of growing up in East Pasco — in the greatest country on Earth.

Despite not having much formal education, my parents were very smart, and like most migrant families, they wanted more for their children. They wanted me to get an education and make the most of the American Dream.

My parents pushed me to be my best, and led by example. They worked hard during the day, and then in the evenings they studied for their citizenship tests. At just 8 years old, I was their translator and enjoyed learning about the great history and traditions of this country as I helped them prepare. They finally became United States citizens thanks to President Reagan, and I couldn’t have been more proud.

Thing like equal justice and due process were among the American principles of which I learned. The right to counsel and a fair and speedy trial are still issues I am working hard to protect today. You can read more about those efforts below also.

Regardless of how you choose to celebrate the Fourth, I hope you will take time to thank a veteran or current service member for protecting our freedoms, and have a fun and safe time enjoying the liberties they have helped secure.

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